Tasmanian yacht Morning Star, the smallest and oldest yacht in the fleet, has finished second across the line in the 5,500 nautical mile two-handed, non-stop ocean race from Melbourne to Osaka, Japan.
Morning Star, crewed by Launceston sailors Joanna Breen and Peter Brooks, crossed the finish line at the southern Japanese seaport early Tuesday morning at 02:28:56 AEST.
Breen, vice-commodore of the Tamar Yacht Club, and Brooks, a member of the Port Dalrymple Yacht, spent more than 39 days at sea in the S&S34, a production model of British Minister Sir Edward Heath’s Morning Cloud.
Morning Cloud won the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race in 1969, the forerunner of the S&S 34 class, noted for their seaworthiness.
In an outstanding display of sailing skills, Breen and Brooks maintained an average boatspeed of 5.5 knots with Morning Star after being first boat away in the staggered start from Melbourne’s Port Phillip.
The boat’s fastest recorded speed was a remarkable 11.8 knots.
Outsailing the cyclone which forced more than half the fleet to seek shelter in Queensland ports, Morning Star led the fleet until late last week when overtaken by the Victorian yacht Chinese Whisper.
Chinese Whisper, a Judel/Vrolijk 62 from Sydney and sailed by Rupert Henry and Greg O’Shea, went on to take line honours early Monday morning, AEST, in the race record time of 21 days 12 hours 41 minutes 13 second.
The small Morning Star, designed more than 50 years ago, started on 15 March whereas the state of the art Chinese Whisper got away from Port Philip on 1 April.
The second Tasmanian yacht in the fleet, Force Eleven, also from the Tamar Yacht Club and sailed by Tristian Gourlay and Jamie Cooper, is still second last in the fleet, having spend three days and ten hours in Southport sheltering from Cyclone Iris.
Come autumn and many keen Hobart yacht owners don’t have the problem of finding full crews to help them race on the Derwent.
It’s now all about two-handed racing with just two sailors on board (in some divisions three) as against summer racing crews of between three and ten crew, depending on the size of the boat.
The Combined Clubs Two-Handed Long Race Series ended on Sunday, unfortunately restricted to two races because of bad weather on the first scheduled sailing day.
The series attracted 17 entrants, and although only nine boats contested Sunday’s race they nevertheless provided a colourful spinnaker start in a light northerly off Bellerive Yacht Club’s Victoria Esplanade starting box.
Both divisions went down the eastern shore to a mark off Tranmere, returning to finish off Victoria Esplanade.
Luckily for the fleet a light NE breeze developed along the eastern shore for the return leg with no wind in the middle of the River Derwent.
BYC member Mark Ballard’s 42 South won the Division 1 AMS category of the final race while Planet X (Jory Linscott) won PHS.
Overall, Off-Piste, Paul Einoder’s Beneteau Oceanis 34 Off-Piste won Division 1 AMS with a 1-3 score on a countback from Whistler (David Aplin) which had two seconds, third place going to 42 South.
The PHS overall trophy went to Whistler from 42 South and Planet X.
Off-Piste’s racing record is certainly versatile: first overall in the 2015 Launceston to Hobart Race, first in AMS in the 2018 Bruny Island Race and now first in AMS in the Combined Clubs Two-Handed Long Race Series.
In Division 2, Graham Hall’s Serenity took out the series with place on Sunday following a win in race one. Second overall went to Sunday’s winner, Whoop De Doo (Thomas Macdonald).
Next Sunday, 15 April, will see the start of the Derwent Sailing Squadron’s popular Autumn Two-Handed Series, also known as ‘Gilbert’s Two-Handed Series’ in honour of club stalwart and life member Gilbert Leitch who introduced this concept of yacht racing on the river.
The DSS Autumn Two-Handed Series comprises five races through to 13 May with the individual clubs’ Winter Series starting with Bellerive Yacht Club on 27 May.
Early entries for the DSS Autumn Two-Handed Series range from the SB20 Mind Games to the Sydney Hobart racer Oskana.
Over the winter, BYC, Derwent Sailing Squadron and the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania will conduct their Winter Series, sailing on alternative Sunday mornings.
Countbacks of placings throughout the series were needed to decide the Division 1 winners of the Combined Clubs Short Course Championships which ended on the River Derwent today.
The results gave Bellerive Yacht Club member Jeff Cordell an overall series win with his Mumm 36 B&G Advantage under IRC scoring and close second places under AMS and PHS.
Derwent Sailing Squadron’s Shaun Tiedemann won the AMS category and finished second overall in IRC, third in IRC with his Sydney 36cr Philosopher.
Division 1 PHS pennant winner was Rad, a Radford 12.5, skippered by Brent McKay from Kettering Yacht Club.
The only clear overall winner was Ben Latham’s J24, T42 Another Toy which won Division 2 PHS by one point from Trouble (Mark Millhouse).
The Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania’s race officer Biddy Badenach ran three short windward/leeward races on the third race day for the championship, sailed in a very light north-westerly wind throughout the afternoon.
The short course championship, totalling 10 races, was introduced this season specifically for skippers and crews who enjoy the cut and thrust of windward/leeward racing as against longer river races, also introduced successfully this season.
With each race about 40 to 50 minutes long, only seconds separated the leading boats in yesterday’s three races, with the PHS category seeing three different winners on the day, Rad, Mem (Paul Boutchard) and X&Y (Toby Richardson).
B&G Advantage and her crew had an outstanding day of competition, winning all three races under both IRC and AMS scoring.
While the wins clinched the Division 1 IRC category on a countback for B&G Advantage it was not quite sufficient to also win AMS from Philosopher.
In the IRC category, out of eight races to count, each yacht had four wins, three seconds and a third, with the final result decided on yesterday’s wins by B&G Advantage.
Under AMS scoring, B&G Advantage had three wins on corrected time yesterday, Philosopher two seconds and a third, but five wins on the previous two days of competition gave the Sydney 36cr the overall victory on a countback.
Philosopher’s overall AMS win completed a fine summer for Tiedemann, his son Sam as the boat’s helmsman and a youthful crew which included winning its division of the 2018 Australian Yachting Championships in Melbourne in January.
In Division 1 PHS, Rad came from third in standings going into the final race day two win the series on a countback from B&G Advantage and Philosopher.
Yesterday, Rad had a 1-5-3 result, B&G Advantage 4-2-2, to finish on 24 points each, with the countback favouring the Kettering Yacht Club boat with two wins against none by B&G Advantage.
Only three boats sailed the final day in Division 2 with Trouble (Mark Millhouse) winning all three, but still falling one point short of overtakingT42 Another Toy (Mark Latham) for the series. Alibi II (Rod Williams) placed third overall.
Hobart’s senior racing yachtsman Don Calvert today added yet another summer pennant (two, in fact) to his remarkable career with his 33-year-old Castro 40, Intrigue.
Calvert and his long-time crew sailed Intrigue almost perfectly in the perfect sailing conditions on the River Derwent for the final race of the Combined Clubs summer pennant series, winning both the AMS and IRC rating categories of Group 1.
Other pennant winners decided yesterday were, under PHS scoring were: Tas Paints (Ian Stewart) in Group 1; Juana (Jock Young) in Group 2; Young Lion (Steve Chau) in Group 3 and Kindred Spirit (Peter Alcock) in Group 4.
Under AMS scoring the other pennant winners are: Wings Three (Peter Haros) in Group 2 and Young Lion (Steve Chau) in Group 3, thus giving two summer pennants to both Intrigue and Young Lion.
Sailing conditions were perfect to wind up the summer pennant, 12-18 knots, with some stronger gusts up to 29 knots on a warm (29 degrees) and sunny autumn afternoon.
Bellerive Yacht Club wound up the nine-race series setting the fleet tough windward legs plus fast spinnaker reaching and running legs, with some spectacular downwind dashes in the gusts.
“The start off BYC 2 was in a 12-18 knot NNW breeze with a challenging beat to the top mark off Rosny Point,” BYC sailing manager Peter Watson said, in reviewing the final race.
“However there were holes appearing in the breeze as the sea-breeze attempted to make its presence felt . As the Group 1 boats turned at the mark off Sandy Bay the wind had dropped to a gentle 5 knots.
“However ‘Mother Nature’ was not going to ruin the day and on the next up wind leg the gradient Northerly breeze again freshened and stayed in for the rest of the race, with some exhilarating rides down wind,” added Watson, who again provided the great photos of today’s racing.
Don Calvert and Intrigue, which represented Australia at the Admiral’s Cup in 1985, won the AMS category race yesterday by just 11 seconds from Shaun Tiedemann’s Philosopher to finish the series on a net 16 point.
Second overall went to Jeff Cordell’s Mumm 36 B&G Advantage on 21 points, third to Madness (Gavin Adamson), also a Mumm 36, on 36 points. Tas Paints placed fourth.
Intrigue won IRC pennant with a net 25 points from Tas Paints on 27 points with the veteran yacht Doctor Who (Rod Jackman) taking third place on a countback from B&G Advantage.
A second place in Group 1 PHS gave Bellerive Yacht Club vice-commodore Ian Stewart a nine point winning margin from fellow BYC boats Filepro (Tim Gadsby) and B&G Advantage (Jeff Cordell).
Derwent Sailing Squadron Commodore Steve Chau sailed his Young 88 Young Lion to a double victory in Group, winning both the AMS and PHS categories.
Young Lion won AMS from another Young 88, Saga (Chris Sheehan) and Silicon Ship (Gordon Clark and David Wyatt) and PHS from Kamehameha (Frank Chatterton) and Serica (Charles Peacock).
In Group 2, the classic 8-metre yacht Juana (Jock Young) won the PHS pennant from Twitch (syndicate) and 42 South (Mark Ballard) while AMS went to Wings Three (Peter Haros) from 42 South and Illusion (David Brett).
After being level on points going into the final race, Peter Alcock’s Kindred Spirit managed to gain a close fourth while rival Wayatih (Allan Morgan) placed fourth.
The overall result was first place to Kindred Spiritby just 2.5 points from Wayitih, with Free n Easy (Rob Jones) third overall.
What more could a Hobart sailor ask for on an early autumn day – a spinnaker run down and back up a sparkling River Derwent in mostly 10 knots of breeze, 25 degrees of temperature and a clear blue sky.
That was how the crews of 47 yachts would have enjoyed yesterday’s Combined Clubs long race, the penultimate summer pennant event of the 2017-2018 racing season.
The breeze could have been stronger, firstly from the nor’nor’west and then a sou’easterly sea breeze for the run home, and there was a windless ‘hole’ in Bull Bay.
Race official Mick Hocking described conditions ‘like glass’ before the sea breeze kicked in to replace the dying northerly.
Looking ashore to Bruny Island, crews could have seen the ruins of James Kelly’s whaling station of the early 1800s.
Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania race officer ‘Biddy’ Badenach sent the Group A fleet down to Bull Bay on the northern end of Bruny Island, a distance of 25 nautical miles.
With the likelihood of a fading breeze, Badenach kept the other groups within the river, rounding marks at Pigeon Holes and Blackman’s Bay, a course of 19 nautical miles.
Mike Pritchard’s Cookson 50, Oskana took line honours in Group 1, but only by one minute and 40 seconds from Scott Sharp’s Melges 32, Crusader with The Fork in the Road (Gary Smith) a further one minute and 53 seconds astern.
On corrected times, Crusader won Group 1 PHS category from The Fork in Road and War Games (Wayne Banks-Smith) but Don Calvert outsailed them all in the AMS and IRC, setting up his Castro 40 Intrigue for yet another summer pennant victory on the Derwent.
Intrigue won AMS from the two Mumm 36s, B&G Advantage (Jeff Cordell) and Madness (Gavin Adamson) and IRC from War Games and Madness.
With one Combined Clubs summer pennant race to sail, Intrigue now heads both AMS and IRC rating categories with Ian Stewart’s TasPaints retaining a narrow lead in PHS.
In Group 2, Peter Haros’ Northshore 38, Wings Three, won line, AMS and PHS honours, winning AMS from 42 South (Henry Finnis), PHS from Pirate’s Pride (Peter Masterton) and the syndicate-owned Twitch.
Group 3 also saw a double win for Andrew Wise’s Madman’s Woodyard, taking AMS from Silicon Ship (Gordon Clark and David Wyatt) and PHS also from Silicon Ship, third going to Footloose (Stewart Geeves).
Steve Chau’s Young 88, Young Lion retains the overall pointscore handicap leads in Group 3, finishing fourth yesterday.
In Group 4, first home was Neville Georgeson’s Hornet, but on corrected time Wayatih (Allan Morgan) placed first from Cool Change (Chris Bobbi) and Ingenue (Nigel Johnston).
Wayatih’s win places it just half a point behind Peter Alcock’s Kindred Spirit going into the final Combined Clubs summer pennant race on Saturday, 17 March.
Bellerive Yacht Club member Chris Sheehan today sailed his Young 88 Saga to victory in the Royal Hobart Regatta’s historic sailing trophy, the Lipton Cup.
The Cup is decided on the best corrected time under PHS scoring by yachts in all four divisions of the Combined Clubs summer pennant series.
Multiple, but unsuccessful America’s Cup challenger Sir Thomas Lipton presented the cup for competition between yachts on the River Derwent in 1912. Initially it was given to the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania who late dedicated it to the Royal Hobart Yacht Club.
The support of the Combined Clubs in recent years has brought yachting back into the Royal Hobart Regatta, now 180 years old, with the fleet today sailing past the regatta grounds to round a mark just south of the Tasman Bridge.
To decide the Lipton Cup, all divisions today sailed the same course around river marks on a day when the wind fluctuated from 0 to 18 knots in strength and from WNW to SW (and in between) during the afternoon.
Saga won line and handicap honours in Group 3 with a PHS corrected time of one hour 14 minutes and 42 seconds, just 16 seconds lower than Group 4 winner Innovator (Ian Smith and Dean Aberley).
In Combined Club pennant results, Saga won Group 3 PHS from Silicon Ship (Gordon Clark and David Wyatt), third place going to Madman’s Woodyard (Andrew Wise).
Saga also won the AMS category of Group 3, beating Steve Chau’s Young Lion and Rumbeat (Justin Barr).
Fastest boat in the entire fleet was Toby Richardson’s X&Y which also took first place in Group 1 PHS from the Farr 40 Wired (Sam Boyes) and War Games (Wayne Banks-Smith).
Under AMS scoring, Jeff Cordell’s B&G Advantage, took first place in Group 1 from Philosopher (Shaun Tiedeman) and Tas Paints (Ian Stewart).
Fronting up on the race course again after competing in the Bruny Island circumnavigation race on Saturday, Philosopher won the Group 1 IRC category, as the Sydney 36cr did in the Bruny race. B&G Advantage placed second, War Games third.
The flukey winds caught out several Group 1 boats with Filepro finishing 11th in fleet, Wild West 12th and Madness 13th across the line in the 13 boat fleet.
The syndicate-owned Twitch had an outright PHS win in Group 2, taking the honours by just 50 seconds on corrected time from Illusion (David Brett), the two crossing the line 55 seconds apart. Illusion won Group 3 AMS from 42 South (Mark Ballard).
Group 4 saw another outright win for Innovator (Ian Smith and Dean Aberley), second place on PHS scoring going to Spinner (Peter Limb) and Wayatih (Allan Morgan).
The River Derwent’s newest addition to its racing fleet, the Melges 32 Crusader, scored her first win on the river in today’s Combined Clubs series.
It was only her second pennant race since Huon Yacht Club and Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania member Scott Sharp bought the fast boat from the mainland only weeks ago.
Crusader turned in an impressive race over the 30 nautical mile course, winning Group 1 PHS on corrected time after finishing second in fleet, only 55 seconds astern of the Bakewell-White 45 The Fork in the Road (Gary Smith). The Melges 32 as yet does not have an AMS or IRC rating.
The win is a significant lead-up to the Crown Series Bellerive Regatta in two weeks’ time when widely experienced Bellerive Yacht Club member Troy Grafton joins the crew of Crusader.
Crusader was fourth around the leeward mark off Yellow Bluff on North Bruny, astern of Wired (Sam Boyes), The Fork in the Road (Gary Smith) and Wild West (Mike Denney) but Wired had problems hoisting its spinnaker and was overtaken by the other yachts.
On the long spinnaker run back to Hobart, The Fork in the Road opened up a good lead but the light displacement Melges 32 got within 55 seconds at the finish off Castray Esplanade.
Crusader won Group 1 PHS from the Farr 40 Heatwave (Stephen Keal) and Ian Stewart’s Mumm 36 Tas Paints.
Under AMS scoring, Group 1 went to Jeff Cordell’s B&G Advantage, also a Mumm 36, with Tas Paints second and Don Calvert’s Castro 40 Intrigue third.
Tas Paints won the IRC category from Marcus McKay’s She’s Apples Two and B&G Advantage.
The Group 2 and 3 fleet’s leeward mark was Bull Bay, a course of 25 nautical miles while Group 4 went to Seacroft Bay and return.
In Group 2, the classic Eight Metre yacht Juana (Jock Young) took line honours and first place under PHS scoring from 42 South (Mark Ballard) and Natelle II (Glen Roper).
Group 2 AMS first place went to Illusion (David Brett) from 42 South and Wings Three (Peter Haros).
Chris Sheehan, back on board his Young 88 Saga after the SB20 Worlds, took out the Line/PHS/AMS treble in Group 3. Saga won AMS from Young Lion (Steve Chau) and Silicon Ship (Gordon Clark and David Wyatt) and PHS from Rousabout (Derek Inglis) and Young Lion.
In Group 4, first place on PHS scoring went to Wayatih (Allan Morgan) by more than nine minutes on corrected time from Free n Easy (Rob Jones) and Astralobe (Peter Bosworth).
After six races in the Combined Clubs summer pennant series of 2017-18, Intrigue is heading both the AMS and IRC rating pointscore in Group 1.
In AMS, Intrigue has a net 10 points, with Wild West on 14 points and B&G Advantage on 15 points. In IRC Intrigue and Tas Paints both have 13 points, with Doctor Who (Rod Jackman) on 15 points.
Tas Paints heads Group 1 PHS with 19 points, Doctor Who has 23 points and Filepro (Tim Gadsby) is on 26 points.
In Group 2, Wings Three leads AMS scoring with 8 points, 42 South has 10 points and Jiyuu (Peter Davis) 14 points. Under PHS, Juana has a net 7 points, 42 South 13 and Twitch (Twitch Syndicate) 15 points.
Derwent Sailing Squadron Commodore Steve Chau leads Group 3 in both the AMS and PHS categories with his Young 88 Young Lion.
Under AMS Young Lion has 5 points to Saga’s 11 points and Silicon Ship’s 16 points. Under PHS, Young Lion has a net 18 points, Kamehameha (Frank Chatterton) and Serica (Charles Peacock) both have 22 points.
Kindred Spirit’s run of wins in Group 4 ended with a fifth place today but she retains the overall lead with a net 12 points. Free n Easy is second with 14 points, Astralobe third on 16.5 points.
Hobart yachtsman Gavin Adamson, one of the driving forces in keelboat racing on the Derwent, today received a well-deserved reward for his efforts – a hat-trick of handicap wins with his Mumm 36 Madness.
Madness won the Group 1 AMS, PHS and IRC categories on corrected time of the Combined Clubs summer pennant, at the same time outsailing his arch-rivals in river racing, Tas Paints, Heatwave and B&G Advantage, also Mumm 36s.
Madness won Group 1 AMS by just 30 seconds on corrected time from Zephyr (Ian Johnston) and Don Calvert’s Intrigue.
In the PHS handicap category Madness again beat Zephyr, the margin this time just five seconds, third place going to Filepro (Tom Gadsby),
Under IRC ratings Madness had a more comfortable, 2 minutes and 7 seconds win from Ian Stewart’s Tas Paints, third place line honours winner War Games (Wayne Banks-Smith).
A fleet of almost 50 keelboats contested the first Combined Clubs post-Christmas summer pennant race, with Bellerive Yacht Club setting a long course for Group to a mark about 6 nautical miles south-east of the Iron Pot and then home.
The other groups sailed to Seacoft Bay and Blackman’s Bay within the river.
“We had a beautiful sea breeze….from the start in mid-river Group 1 boats sailed to windward down the river and to a mark in Storm Bay then home to a finish off Victoria Esplanade,” BYC marine manager Peter Watson said after the race.
“The SSE gradient breeze, although light at the start, kept building as the sea breeze started to take effect.
“The fleet made a colourful spectacle as they ‘rolled’ home downwind in the breeze, up to 15-18 knots at the finish,” Watson added.
The morning start saw the fleet tackle a long beat down the river in a light southerly breeze, while the building afternoon sea breeze favoured the smaller boats on corrected time.
The generally light conditions favoured the lightweight harbour racing yachts, with the two Farr 40s, War Games (Wayne Banks-Smith) and Wired (Sam Boyes) leading the fleet home.
Bigger ocean racers, The Fork in the Road (Gary Smith) and Tilt (Peter Cretan) finished well back in the 18-boat Group 1 fleet.
In Group 2, Peter Haros’ Wings Three won the AMS category from 42 South (Mark Ballard) and Illusion (David Brett) while front runner Juana (Jock Young) took out PHS from Pirate’s Pride (Peter Masterton) and 42 South.
Derwent Sailing Squadron Commodore Steve Chau continued his winning ways with his Young 88 Young Lion in Group 3 AMS, finishing second across the line to near sistership Saga (Chris Sheehan) but winning the race on corrected time. Another Young 88, Footloose (Stewart Geeves) placed third.
Group 3 PHS went to Rousabout (Derek Inglis) from Footloose and Serica (Charles Peacock).
In Division 4, the Mottle 33 Kindred Spirit (Peter Alcock) led the fleet around the course but placed back in fifth place on corrected time with the race going to Wayath (Allan Morgan) from Astrolabe (Peter Bosworth) and Free n Easy (Rob Jones).
For the past two week’s Hobart’s River Derwent provided near perfect sailing conditions for the SB20 world championship, but on Friday evening and yesterday it turned sour for the old-timers in the IOR Cup.
Designed and built back in the 1970s to then international IOR rating rule, these former ‘half tonners’ and ‘one tonners’ turn out each summer for the Bellerive Yacht Club/Hobart Jaguar IOR Cup.
Despite rain squalls that brought vicious wind gusts reaching 42 knots in Friday’s twilight race and even patches of drifting conditions yesterday, competition was as keen and close as it was in the heyday of level rating racing.
The gusty conditions also showed that these boats designed to the IOR rule are still just as difficult to handle downwind, and there were some spectacular broaches.
In Division 1, just 62 seconds on corrected time in the final race and one place separated the top two boats, with Scott Broadby’s Farr 1104, Hot Prospect, to take out the series with a 1-6-1 scorecard.
Just one point behind with a 2-5-2 result was Justin Barr’s Rumbeat, also a Farr 1104, with another two points to the classic 8-metre yacht Juana (Jock Young) which placed 4-2-5.
The other race winner was the former Sydney Hobart race winner and Admiral’s Cup team yacht Ultimate Challenge, a Dubois 40 now owned by Peter Jenkins.
Yachts designed by Tasmanian Walter Knoop dominated results in Divisions 2 with Scott Sutton’s Quintal winning by one points from Silicon Ship (Gordon Clark and David Wyatt) and Alley Oop (Alan Nelson).
Quintal won the twilight race, Lock on Wood (Ron Akhurst) race 2 and Alley Oop race three.
Division 3 was just as close, with Temeraire IV, Richard Ware’s Peter Cole-design, winning by one point from Chyanne, a Knoop 30 skippered by Rhys Jones, third place going to Free n Easy, a Doven/Knoop 30.
There were three different PHS corrected time winners in Division 3, Chyanne winning race one, Rhumun (Tim Marszalek) race two with Temeraire IV taking out race three.
“It was if the River Derwent finally exhaled after providing beautiful sailing conditions for the past two weeks and the SB20 worlds,” commented BYC sailing manager Peter Watson.
“She finally let go with the unpredictable weather that the river is famous for.”
Shaun Tiedemann’s Sydney 36cr Philosopher, a former Australian yachting champion, today impressively wound up her preparation for another tilt at the championships in Melbourne next January.
On an afternoon of fresh to strong southerly winds, gusting in rain squalls to 26 knots, Philosopher scored two wins and a third out of three races under AMS scoring and notched up a 2-3-1 score under IRC.
Under her previous Sydney owner the yacht, then named Philosopher’s Club and owned by 18-footer world champion Peter Sorensen, won her class at the Australian yachting championships at Hamilton Island.
The 2018 championships will be sailed on Port Phillip and in 2019 out of Hobart, with Tiedemann and his young crew all fired up to compete against Australia’s best.
After today’s day of heavy weather racing Philosopher heads the pointscore in all three handicap divisions of the Combined Clubs short course championships
Three windward/leeward races were sailed in what Bellerive Yacht Club sailing manager Peter Watson described as a true test of crews and boats
“Conditions were testing with fresh to strong southerly winds gusting in the rain squalls to 26 knots and topped off with sloppy one metre waves turning the Derwent in a river of whitecaps,” Watson said.
“A premium was placed on good crew work with any mistakes brutally punished by the fresh breeze and lumpy waves.”
Watson said there had been several severe broaches including Filepro (Tim Gadsby) losing both her spinnaker brace and sheet in a severe knock-down.
“The result was having the spinnaker fly high in the breeze horizontal with the top of the mast,” Watson described the incident.
“It took great skill and perseverance by the crew to retrieve the spinnaker undamaged and they were able to re-group and continue racing for the day.
In Division 2 the crews were more conservative and only hoisted spinnakers in the last race.
Just to add further drama to the yachting racing, two ships transited through the race area during the blustery race one.
Bellerive Yacht Club member Jeff Cordell’s Mumm 36 B&G Advantage, won all three handicap categories in race one for Division 1, PHS,AMS and IRC. However, she was forced to retire from race three.
Sistership TasPaints won IRC and PHS categories in race two while Philosopher clinched her overall pointscore leads in Division 1 by winning the AMS and IRC categories of the final race, the seventh of the series.
The other Division 1 race winners yesterday were Mem (Paul Boutchard) in the PHS category in the first race of the day and Filepro (Tim Gadsby) in the PHS category of the final race,
In Division 2, Ben Latham’s J24 T42 Another Toy won all three races under PHS scoring.